Thursday, March 23, 2023


Caught up in the annual March Madness, we are headed down to Louisville to catch a couple the NCAA Tournament Games.  (We’ll see both a Sweet 16 contest between Princeton and Creighton as well as a yet undetermined match up between two teams advancing to The Elite Eight.)

That means that our next new post will be over a week away, so in the meantime, please take advantage of this opportunity to scroll back and enjoy some of what you may have missed over our past fifteen years of posting here.  Use the Search Window in the top, upper left hand corner …

Or scroll down to the bottom of the page and do a random click to look at some of what we’ve covered over the past fifteen years.

Either way, you can still enjoy your daily dose of Forgotten Hits … and maybe make a few new discoveries along the way!   

See ya when we get back!  (kk)

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

The Book of Top 10 Beatles Lists

The other day we told you about a new book by Charles Rosenay called "The Book of Top 10 Beatles Lists."

Within hours, we heard from several readers who had already ordered copies of Charles' new book after reading about it in Forgotten Hits.  (Our copy is also on the way!) 

Although we've never actually met, I've known Charles Rosenay for close to twenty years, if only thru his celebrated Beatles tours, taking fans thru Liverpool (and more) to show some of the early Beatles' favorites haunts.  (Speaking of haunts, Charles is also quite known for his fondness ... and tours ... of horror films and monsters!)

Frequent FH contributor David Salidor (who is also helping to promote the new book) sent us this interview that he did with Charles in support of this new venture.

Favorites are a big part of the just-released book, The Book of Top 10 Beatles Lists, which is very different from the hundreds of Beatles titles that have come out before. It contains 64 Top 10 Lists of favorite songs, albums, films, appearances, and a whole lot of memories and insights from music legends, actors, athletes, authors, disc jockeys, and many friends and relatives of The Beatles … including two former Beatles!

Here’s our interview with the book’s author Charles F. Rosenay:

DAVID SALIDOR:  When did you become a Beatles fan?

CHARLES ROSENAY:  One of my first memories in life was seeing The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show. The girls who watched that wanted to marry - or sleep with - a Beatle. The boys wanted to be a Beatle! There's no way to quantify how many became musicians after that night, but clearly millions became fans. On February 9, 1964, I was one of those countless fans, except I never stopped loving them, studying them, collecting them, and continuing my fascination with them as musical geniuses.

DS:  How were you different from those millions of fans? 

CR:  When I grew up, The Beatles became a much bigger part of my life. While still in school I started producing Beatles conventions; I published / edited  / designed / distributed a Beatles magazine called "Good Day Sunshine" (which lasted nearly two decades); I booked and managed Beatles bands (and even one of The Beatles for a short while in the 80’s - Pete Best); I began hosting and organizing "Magical History Tours," which brought fans and travelers to Liverpool & London every Summer since 1983; and I promote music Beatles festivals.

DS:  Did you ever meet any of The Beatles?

CR:  I've met and taken photos with Paul McCartney the most, I have had close encounters with Ringo Starr through the years (and even asked him a question on national television), and got up-close with George Harrison only once - in Japan when he was touring with Eric Clapton. I nearly had my John Lennon moment in October of 1980, but that's a story for another interview. When people ask which Beatles I met, I also include Pete Best, the drummer before Ringo, and Chas Newby, who was the band's first left-handed bassist before Paul. Both of them have chapters in my book.

DS:  Why does the world need another Beatles book?

CR:  Why does the world need another Kennedy or Elvis or Marilyn Monroe book? Why does the world need more Beatles tribute acts? Because there are still fans and collectors who - like myself - love not just the music but every bit of trivia and information about them.  

DS:  What prompted you to write a Beatles book?

CR:  For years, people asked when I was going to put out a Beatles book. They thought I should possibly write a book containing all the interviews I’ve conducted at my conventions and for my magazine, or perhaps a book detailing my Beatles or tour encounters, or maybe even just a biography or memoir. Believe or not, I always said I never would write a Beatles book because I felt that every topic was already covered. So many great new Beatles books are still coming out all the time. Boy, was I wrong. I'd like to think that "The Book Of Top 10 Beatles Lists" is so different from any of the others.

There was another reason I thought I’d never do a Beatles book. For nearly 20 years, that Beatles magazine I mentioned, "Good Day Sunshine," came out every other month and, although I loved each and every issue, it was one of the hardest things I’d ever done in my life. Most issues were about 80 pages. So, I always felt that I was putting out six books a year! After that run, I never expected to do an actual book.

Then came COVID.

When the pandemic hit in 2020, just like you, I was safely isolating. I had the good fortune of being able to be home with my wife, Melissa, and my three children, Lauren, Harry, and Ian. With no DJ gigs (my main vocation), no tours, no band bookings, no promotions, and actually a little extra time on my hands, I mostly watched a lot of movies, played lots of pinball, tried to get my kids deeper into the Beatles' solo and rarer tracks, and went bicycling and hiking with my family when the weather was nice. But late at night, after my wife and kids went to sleep, I stayed up late and put together my first book, "The Book of Top 10 Horror Lists." Monsters were one of my other passions growing up. That title was so well-received, it only made sense to follow it up with another Top 10 list collection, but this time it just had to be on The Beatles! In putting together that first book, I came up with the most fitting photo of myself as a kid. In my family’s Bronx, New York apartment, I am playing with all my monster models. Hanging up on the wall behind me, though, is a magazine cover poster of The Beatles! That sums it up!

DS:  How is this different from any other Beatles books out there?


CR:  First of all, it's a fun read. It's not just fact after fact, and it's not minutiae. It's very personal and is of interest to more than Beatles fans. While Beatles fans will love it, and the die-hards will learn a lot of new stuff from it, it is also of interest to the general reader, because it's equally a celebrity, pop-culture book. The top ten lists come from not only Beatles relatives and friends, musicians who toured or recorded with them, and others who are part of The Beatles universe, but also from film and television actors, radio and TV personalities, authors, athletes, rock stars, and other notables.


DS:  Why sixty-four top 10 Lists?


CR:  My first book - of horror lists - had 100 lists, but was many years in the making. When I hit fifty Beatles top ten lists, I realized I could've gone another few years and reached 100. But this was a huge year for me - the 40th anniversary of me presenting tours to England for Beatles fans, and I really wanted to have the book available for Beatleweek. When I hit sixty, the song "When I'm 64" was playing, and I realized I should end it "When I'm (at) 64." Besides, '64 was that magical year when The Beatles invaded America and my world, so that number made sense. Another consideration was when it took so long to release my first book, some of the people who contributed horror lists (actors Ed Asner and Karen Black comes to mind), passed away before the book came out. I wanted everyone in the book to be able to enjoy the final product. 


DS:  Are there also photos?


CR:  Yes, the book is over 200 pages and is fully illustrated. Along with some classic and rarely-seen period photos, there are many pictures of the contributors with the author. That's on the inside; on the cover are images of three eras of The Beatles by Shannon, recognized as the world's greatest Beatles artist.

DS:  What other elements of the book are there besides top ten lists?


CR:  It should be pointed out that there's much more than just top 10 lists, as each list is accompanied by comments from a celebrity or Beatles associate. Sure, we all love the lists, but it is the commentary and reasons for the choices which give the collection more substance. Whether it's original Beatle Pete Best's memories, or Paul McCartney's step-sister Ruth McCartney's top ten important Liverpool locations, or author Larry Kane's recollections of his ten most outstanding U.S. concerts, or Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Elliot Easton's (of The Cars) choices of The Beatles' best "middle eights," or television personality Dick Cavett's most memorable moments with The Beatles, every chapter is captivating, enlightening, fascinating, often humorous, and always entertaining. 


Additionally, there's a comprehensive index, should the reader wish to see which pop-culture icons or Beatles-connected-individuals picked certain songs or albums. There is also a Foreword by John Lennon's sister, Julia Baird, and an Afterword by Beatles friend and confidante, Bill Harry, who was the publisher of Mersey Beat Magazine in the sixties.


DS:  How can one get a copy of "The Book Of Top 10 Beatles Lists?"


CR:  Released by Kiwi Publishing, the soft-cover is now on sale on Amazon in all countries ($19.99 U.S. here: ... 

and personally-signed editions are available directly by emailing or by phoning (203) 795-4737. 

The website is  


Be sure to order your copy today!!!


(Watch for a Forgotten Hits review after I've had a chance to make my way thru my copy!)


Thanks, Guys!  (kk)

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

A Reader Review

Frequent Contributor and East Coast FH Rep Shelley Sweet-Tufano has sent us a recent concert review ...

And it's NOT Peter Noone this time!!!  (lol)

Check it out!

I have never seen Jay and the Americans do a show as the only performers on the bill. Tonight I have, and as I heard from so many others in the audience:  "THEY WERE GREAT!" "I loved the banter and all the stories." I smile because I knew it would be a great show, and also because I was a bit surprised myself.

I am so proud of Milford Performing Center for bringing the artists I want to see to the newly renovated Veterans Memorial Auditorium. In November we had Herman's Hermits starring Peter Noone. Tonight, I watch Jay and the Americans. In April, Gary Puckett appears and Peter Noone is being brought back this coming November. Also waiting to confirm a date is the 52nd Street Band, Billy Joel's original group. Now that we have an updated performance hall, my dreams have come through to reality. Thank you, Steve Cooper! Tonight's show is a benefit for Probus of New Haven, who help people with disabilities. 

'Only In America' is the only way for a group with 'Americans' in the title to begin their show. This song is a favorite of mine because it is upbeat, calls us to the dance floor and the words are a love song honoring "the land of opportunity."  "Would a classy girl like you, fall for a poor boy like me?" They had me at "classy."

'Sunday and Me,' 'Some Enchanted Evening' and 'Up On The Roof' follow. JATA were true fans of The Drifters, who recorded in the same studios as they. They are not doing tribute covers to other groups, but perform their own arrangements of songs that enriched their lives and are reminders of friends' triumphs. I wrote in my notes that tonight is a life and times trip from the vantage point of Jay and the Americans. Personalization that adds interest and information. 
Jay Reincke is introduced as Jay number 3 ... WAIT! Sandy is holding up 4 fingers! Is another 'Jay' coming forward? "I know you see 4 fingers, but this one has such bad arthritis, that it always sticks up." NO CB!, (Chew-on-that Boy), he means his pinky finger. 
The two original Americans, Marty Sanders and Sandy Deanne are introduced and I continue to ask myself, "Where is chick-magnet Howie Kane?" Sandy explains Howie was in a car accident and cracked his sternum, which at any age proffers an OUCH! He is on the mend and will return, but needs time to heal. 

Returning to memories of Jay #1, they sing 'She Cried,' followed by Roy Orbison favorites, 'Crying' and 'Pretty Woman.'  One of my favorite songs to hear performed by Marty and Sandy is 'Let It Be Me,' which now brings up sweet sentiments and memories. Wearing 45 rpm record inserts on chains around their necks, this song brings me to the beginnings of my listening to rock n roll ... first grade. 

Marty Sanders has personally told me the story of his introduction of Jay #2 (David Blatt) into the group after Jay Traynor left so as Sandy now tells it.  It is a familiar tale with an ending of Jay Black belting out 'Cara Mia.'  I would never want to follow that act with that song, but Jay Reincke is up to the task and the audience is wildly enthusiastic. What a way to end the first act! 


LET'S LOCK THE DOOR, or let's just listen to a song about locking the door. As I continue my comments, I hope it becomes obvious that it is the individual talent of each performer that has created the cohesion and musical quality that has sustained Jay and the Americans through 60 years of live performances. 

Jay Reincke has a love for Elvis (remember him? ... oh yeah, Kent talks about his ex-wife, daughter and granddaughter here.) In order to convince Marty, Sandy and Howie to add an Elvis tune to their set-list, he had to find a song that was recorded by The Drifters, as well as Mr. Presley. Due to songs being recorded and re-recorded by several groups in the 60's, he came up with 'Such a Night,' and they perform it next while Jay adds the swivel hips action that Ed Sullivan wouldn't allow shown on TV. 

Two slow and sensual hits are next: 'Stand By Me' and 'Walking in the Rain.'  OH such romance - only to be interrupted by 'Along Came Jones' - which was a surprise joy to me as Marty Sanders became Salty Sam and continuously grabbed and tied up poor Sweet Sue, who was then rescued each time by Tall Thin Jones. The lady sitting next to me apologized for singing along to each of the songs all night. I assured her I could not hear her over my own singing and fortunately Jay and the Americans were loud enough to drown us both out.

There were so many good stories, I want to tell them all, but in an effort to save on typing, (and encourage you to go see them), I will condense and give you tid-bits.

'The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore,' written by and given to the Americans by a couple of Four Seasons. Were they the only ones who received these songs?
'Gimme Good Lovin'' is not the one from the Rascals, but those Crazy Elephants. 'Reelin' in the Years' might be a reminder that people you help in life could leave you and become something like ... I don't know ... Steely Dan?

There were sax solos, guitar solos, keyboard and drums. I want to give credit to the USA BAND but I don't have all their names. Here is what I do know:
Bass - Mark Baron;Keyboards - George Tuzzeo;Drums - Rick Van Horn;Sax & Trumpet - Marty and Dave (sorry no last names);Guitar - I was expecting Dave Zane, but this gentleman (whose name I did not hear) was excellent with his guitar solos.

Howie, we missed you, but your partners did you proud and mentioned you in their stories ... the most interesting being you dating all three Ronettes. Get well.

We need to close now (rats!)  So 'Come A Little Bit Closer' and the "knoodling" guitar of 'This Magic Moment' by Marty Sanders will be our farewell to a wonderful night.

Bye everyone!
Shelley J Sweet-Tufano

Monday, March 20, 2023

It's The First Day of Spring!!!


I'm ready!!!  (kk)

Don't know what the weather might be like in Chicago, but in Denver, here's the changing Weather this time of the year, as we Welcome the First Days of Spring ~~~

One Day, it can be Below Freezing ~~~


And the next day, they tell us to Dress for the Mid 60s!


Then, when it soon gets really nice and Music fills the air, I'm reminded of that Big Springtime Forgotten Hit Song from the 1960s, "Blowin' in the Wind" by Peter Pollen Mary!


kk …

Last Night,Cousin Brucie Talked To Felix Cavaliere, Who's Living In Nashville.

Felix & Gene Cornish Will Be Touring Together = "TIME-PEACE TOUR."

Name Comes From Their Rascals’ Album.

Tour Kicks off 4/6/2023 In New Jersey.

Correct Me If I'm Wrong --- But Didn't Felix Do A Few Concerts With Micky Dolenz?

They Did A Few Shows In New York & Then I Didn't Hear Any More About It.

Sounds Like A Winner. I Wonder Why It Didn't Last Longer Than It Did?


PS – The Wild Wayne Fund Raiser Starts Tonight. They Do It Twice A Year To Cover Expenses.

Felix and Micky did an assortment of dates together, but you’re right … it didn’t go on for very long (nor was it ever intended to.)  His tour teaming up with former bandmate Gene Cornish is only a handful of dates, too … but you’ve got a much better chance of seeing them than I do … nearly all the shows are on the east coast.  (kk)

>>>In 1956, Frankie Avalon Was Playing Trumpet And Bobby Rydell Was Playing Drums With Rocco And The Saints. (FB)

Frankie began his career in early 1954 with the single "Trumpet Sorrento" on the "X" label. That single notched a week on the Cash Box Best-Selling Singles chart at #42. Three years later, on his first single on the Chancellor label, "Cupid" (not the Sam Cooke song), he was backed by Rocco & The Saints.

Randy Price


The long-standing legend about Frankie and Bobby Rydell being in the same band together proved to be greatly exaggerated as well.


From the bio I was given when I interviewed Bobby Rydell a few years ago for Forgotten Hits:


In 1956, Bobby played drums in the unsuccessful band Rocco and the Saints, which included Frankie Avalon on trumpet.  As a drummer, he teamed with Frankie Avalon (on trumpet!) in Rocco and the Saints when he was just twelve years old.

kk:  One more question from a reader (and in hindsight, after reviewing the comments shown above, I have GOT to believe that this reader was Randy price!!!):  "Bobby had been in a band as a drummer called Rocco and the Saints with Frankie Avalon. Frankie played trumpet (I have an EP by Frankie from 1954 on X Records) and Frankie was signed by Chancellor Records in 1957. Did Bobby continue playing with Rocco and the Saints? The group was even featured on the flipside of "Cupid", Frankie's first single for Chancellor Records, with a song called "Jivin' With the Saints". Was Bobby on drums on this track? Chancellor then signed Fabian in 1958. I'm wondering why they didn't sign Bobby, too, who signed with Cameo in 1959." Were there ever any talks between you and Chancellor Records?  Did you play drums on Frankie's B-Side?)   

BR:  I only played for Rocco and the Saints for one night … the drummer got sick so I only sat in for the one night … I was never really a full member of the band. 

[EDITOR'S NOTE:  I think THAT may be new information shared with our readers for the very first time … so much has been made over the years about Frankie Avalon and Bobby Rydell being in a band together early on, but I don't think most of America ever figured it lasted only one single evening!]

You can read our FH Interview with Bobby Rydell here:


Dolly Parton and Elton John have just finished recording their new duet together for Dolly's upcoming Rock And Roll Album.

It's (yet another) remake of Elton's "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me," one of Dolly's favorites, she says.

Dolly recorded a solo version of the tune and then was hoping to get his input on the track.

“I’ve sent out a message asking if he would sing with me on it and possibly play the piano. So if y’all get to see him, say, ‘Dolly wants you to sing on her record!’”  (kk)

FH Reader Timmy C sent this very cool photo out to several music friends this past weekend (myself included, thank you very much) ...

But a few of us (also myself included) questioned if this was actually a real photo or if something had been manipulated to create it.

(Ken Voss ... I'm counting on you to weigh in on this one!!!)


But Timmy stands his ground ...

And sent me this to back things up!

It's real...
Jimmy Carl Black, interview: 
Where was the inside cover shot done for the "Money" album.  Jimi Hendrix joined you for the album picture. Do you remember how he felt, or what his attitude was toward the Mothers in dresses, and the photo experience? 
Some place on Fifth Ave. in New York City. I think the photographer was Faye Dunaway's husband at the time. I don't know how Jimi felt about the whole thing. I think it was good publicity for him. I know I didn't like that dress 'cause it didn't fit but I thought it was a great picture. We weren't the first band to do a picture in drag; The Rolling Stones were. If it was good enough for them, then it had to be good enough for us. 
In June, Cal was working on the cover design for We're Only In It For The Money. He had a little workshop above the theater where he was putting all the mannequins and things together for the cover. When he had finished them all, we went to Jerry Schatzberg who was a famous photographer on Park Avenue and that's were we shot the actual pictures. 
Jimi Hendrix was in the Village that week we did the album cover. He was back in America for the first time since he'd make it big in England. He'd come back to headline at The Monterey Pop Festival. He's not a cardboard prop on the album cover because he was actually with at the shoot. For the record, the other black guy on there is Tom Wilson, the guy with my high school letterman sweater on.

This was the first of many parodies of Sgt Pepper and very much in the Mothers' irreverent style. 

Cal Schenkel:   "It was Frank's concept, and it was just a question of parodying what existed. First Frank did a little sketch of the cover and said, I want to find all these people and get them and put them in the picture. And there were like 100 people. We started to try and get people and it was just impossible.  Jimi Hendrix was the only live person there other than the Mothers and the corporate members and Herbie Cohen, Tom Wilson and a few other people like Gail. The rest were either just found images: some of them came out of Frank's High School Year Book and there were some old pictures I had.

"We put the cover together in three pieces, foreground, the Mothers and the foreground people, then the rest was all collaged and stripped in. The photography was done by Jerry Schatzberg who was a pretty famous fashion photographer. We went to his studio, a really upscale New York fashion studio, and there were like ten assistants. It was great!"

Jerry Schatzberg:  Frank approached me because he'd seen the sleeve that I did on the Stones' Can You See Your Mother, Baby, Standing In The Shadows? when they were in drag, and he had an idea that he wanted to do a combination of that and Sgt. Pepper. And instead of flowers and wonderful dreams, he wanted garbage and old food and what you see around on the floor. We both knew Jimi Hendrix, so we asked Jimi to come in, so Jimi sat in there as one of the faces. Frank knew exactly what he wanted, and we discussed it, and stuff just started coming in and we started setting it up and preparing it. It took us, I think, the better part of a day and a half to actually shoot it and I remember finishing quite late at night, but the studio was an absolute mess afterwards, all those vegetables rotting. 

And, as requested, Ken Voss (our resident Jimi Hendrix expert) DID weigh in on this ... and in a big way, with more photos from this same session ...

July 18, 1967 – The Experience record overdubs for “The Stars That Play With Laughing Sam’s Dice” at Mayfair Studios. The band first laid down instrumental tracks 6/28/67 at Houston Studios in Los Angeles.  

Mitch Mitchell recalled in an interview, “’The Stars That Play With Laughing Sam’s Dice’ was a deliberate joke, you know, S.T.P. and L.S.D. But it was just filler, done in one take with the background vocals done by people in the studio. They were Jimi’s old friends like Devon Wilson.”  

A mono version was originally released as the B-side of the single “Burning Of The Midnight Lamp,” with an alternate stereo mix included on the 1997 MCA commercial release South Saturn Delta.  

Frank Zappa himself attended the Jimi Hendrix Experience recording session at the Mayfair Recording Studio on 701 Seventh Avenue, New York, on July 18, 1967. Although his presence is unconfirmed, Zappa may very well be one of the many people who made up "the Milky Way Express" for "The Stars That Play With Laughing Sam's Dice" [S020], contributing an assortment of voices, whistles, cheers, et cetera.

 JHE roadie Neville Chesters remembered the day well . . . "Quite a few people dropped in on that session. It was a really shitty studio, it was about six or eight floors up . . . Midtown New York, a pretty dreadful place. It was just like offices and they converted it into a studio, most odd. I remember a photo session came out of that. It was the same day or later in the day of that session" (UniVibes #18, May 1995, p. 18).

The same night, Zappa had a scheduled photo shoot for the album, the cover being a take off of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper album. Zappa invited Jimi along, and he actually appears in the group on the cover.

And finally, here's something from the always helpful and insightful Chuck Buell ... 

>>>It's the Forgotten Hits Book Club, for sure!  (kk)
>>>If you continue to print pages like 'Thursday This and That', how am I ever supposed to find time to read these books?  (Shelley Sweet-Tufano)
>>>You DEFINITELY still need to find a way to squeeze us in from time to time, too!  (kk)
Shelly resorts to trying to find the time to "squeeze" in both!
Thanks, buddy!
(I won't lie ... I grimaced a little bit as I typed that ...
And my voice went up an octave as well.)  
(The flurries should stop any minute now!)  kk